By definition, it seems, romantic comedies are synonymous with cheesy rubbish. And so, many of us (I don’t know what category “we” fall into but we know who we are and there are plenty of us) dread the types of movies that get released around Valentine’s Day. How did it get to be this way? In my estimation, it’s kind of like with any genre of storytelling when the rhythms and subjects of a certain style of story or movie become so popular that they grow tired and cliché. They probably began in the right place, and were tapping into some aspect of human experience that was relatable and emotionally satisfying, but are so overused and outdated that they’re dull at best and horribly irritating at worst.
There remains reason to hope, however. Despite the allure of pumping out rom-com trash that will inevitably make money because there will always be a market for selling people their own tears, there are plenty of movies that are able to quench our thirst for emotional catharsis without exploiting our uncontrollable lust for romance. They tend to require some sneakiness on the part of the filmmakers, but deep down they hit us right where romantically comedic or humorously heartfelt movies always have: right square in our heartbones.
Here are 6 movies that tell other romantic comedies, “Don’t associate me with you! I’m different and actually good.” Is it clear what I’m trying to say about them? I’m saying they don’t suck. We’re going to be inundated with romantic movie talk this week so we might as well make the best of it.
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